In a survey from Philips published earlier this year, 44% of adults said their sleep had worsened in the past five years.

Dutch startup secures €1.4m for digital sleep coaching platform

By Leontina Postelnicu
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Amsterdam-based startup Shleep, maker of B2B sleep coaching technology, has raised €1.4m to further develop its existing platform, it was announced today. The raise came from investors including Global Founders Capital and Health Innovations.

Shleep, which boasts names like Spotify and Deloitte in its client base, aims to help employees and teams change their sleep habits in order to tackle burnout and improve productivity, engagement and their overall health and wellbeing.

With its digital sleep coaching platform, users get access to a “sleep expert”, courses, relaxation tools and individual and group consultations, as well as live webinars providing information on how to cope with sleep deprivation and insomnia, among others.

WHY IT MATTERS

Findings from a study carried out by researchers from the University of South Florida, based on a survey of 130 employees working in IT and published in Sleep Health in June, indicated that sleeping just 16 minutes less than usual could hinder job performance the next day.

In an earlier survey from Philips of over 11,000 adults from 12 countries, released in March, 44% of adults reported that their sleep had worsened in the past five years, and most respondents said they would rather turn to the internet for help instead of going to a doctor.  

THE LARGER TREND

A wide variety of entrants are seeking to address sleep-related issues in the consumer-facing digital health arena, with options ranging from wrist wearables to rings and even smart beds.

Finnish company Oura Health, maker of a sleep and activity tracking smart ring, announced in December last year that it had exceeded $20m in total funding, and even Prince Harry was spotted wearing its wearable last October.

Meanwhile, in June, Tsunekazu Ishihara, president and CEO of The Pokémon Company, unveiled plans for the development of an app called Pokémon Sleep that would track players’ sleep and reflect their habits in game, expected to launch next year.

And only last month, Australian company Sleepfit and Swiss digital health engagement platform Dacadoo announced a partnership to tackle sleep disorders.

ON THE RECORD

Dr Els van der Helm, sleep expert and chief executive of Shleep, said in a statement: “With so many people disengaged and unproductive at work, we believe that we need to fix one of the root causes.

“Research now shows sleep is a critical driver for your burnout risk, your ability to come up with new insights or ideas, to manage your own emotions and recognize emotions in others, and even your ability to trust others and behave ethically.”

Jöran Albers, chief operating officer of the startup, added: “This funding round is a major milestone for Shleep. It will allow us to scale our platform much faster to more employees.”